Monthly Archives: June 2008

Pyramid At The Louvre, in Paris Commissioned By Francois "the Sphinx" Mitterand A 33 Degree Freemason Of The Grand Orient Lodge




The pyramid at the Louvre, commissioned by Francois “the Sphinx” Mitterand a 33 degree Freemason of the Grand Orient Lodge to be made out of 666 panes of glass to the layout of the mall at Washington, DC, the Illuminati have made their presence clear through the occult symbolism of their architecture. He also served as President of France from 1981 to 1995, elected as representative of the Socialist Party. The only Socialist President ever elected in France.

louvre.fr

The Palais du Louvre, which houses one of the most stunning collections of artworks in the world, is known first and foremost as a museum. Yet for almost seven hundred years the buildings constituted one of the principal residences of the kings and emperors of France.

Built shortly after 1190 by King Philippe Auguste as a defensive fortress, by the 14th century the Palais du Louvre had become a pleasant residence that occasionally served as a royal home. Francis I chose to turn it into a Renaissance “palace”. Over time, a royal estate gradually developed. Henry IV ordered the château built by Catherine de Médicis in the Tuileries to be linked to the Louvre palace by a “grand gallery” bordering the Seine. Louis XIV, who resided at the Louvre until his departure for Versailles in 1678, completed the Cour Carrée (Square Court), which was closed off on the city side by a colonnade. When the court moved to Versailles, French monarchs lost interest in the Palais du Louvre.
In 1793, the Louvre became a museum, and has been given over ever since to the conservation and presentation of thousands of artworks and legacies of past civilizations. In the early 19th century, sovereigns transformed the interiors but carried out little building work. But from the mid-19th century onward, the Louvre underwent the largest phase of extension in its history. Napoleon III completed the unification of the Palais des Tuileries and the Palais du Louvre by building the Aile Denon (Denon wing) on the Seine side and finishing the Aile Richelieu on the rue de Rivoli side. In 1871, the Palais des Tuileries burned down. Thenceforth, the Louvre opened onto the great perspective facing western Paris.
The Grand Louvre project, launched by President François Mitterand in 1981, modernized the museum and extended it, with the opening in 1993 of the Richelieu wing, which formerly housed the Ministry of Finance.

Secret Document Reveals FBI Knowingly Allowed Bin Laden Family To Personally Charter Flight After 9/11 Under Orders From George Bush

F.B.I. document W199I from Judicial Watch prove agency let Osama’s family go at his request without even questioning them

Steve Watson
Prison Planet
Thursday, June 21, 2007

View FBI Document 199I WF213589

The FBI were aware that Osama Bin Laden may have chartered one of the flights that took Bin Laden family members out of the U.S. in the days after the 9/11 attacks, yet allowed the planes to depart without even questioning them, new Agency documents reveal.

While all other air traffic had been grounded for days by the authorities they knowingly allowed the immediate family of their prime suspect behind the attacks to get into planes and fly out at Bin Laden’s own request.

The previously confidential documents (PDF link) have been obtained by Judicial Watch through the Freedom of Information Act and ongoing litigation.

The documents state:

ON 9/19/01, A 727 PLANE LEFT LAX, RYAN FLT #441 TO ORLANDO, FL W/ETA (estimated time of arrival) OF 4-5PM. THE PLANE WAS CHARTERED EITHER BY THE SAUDI ARABIAN ROYAL FAMILY OR OSAMA BIN LADEN…THE LA FBI SEARCHED THE PLANE [REDACTED] LUGGAGE, OF WHICH NOTHING UNUSUAL WAS FOUND.

Traffic control reports show that the plane made four stops to pick up passengers and was then allowed to depart the United States for Paris where all passengers disembarked on 9/20/01.

The documents reveal that the FBI did not consider a single Saudi national nor any of the Bin Laden family worthy of investigative value.

Furthermore, Judicial Watch’s examination of the documents has revealed that they contain numerous errors and inconsistencies which show the FBI’s investigation of the Saudi flights to be woefully inadequate and almost non existent.

For example, in one document, the FBI claims to have interviewed 20 of 23 passengers on the Ryan International Airlines flight (commonly referred to as the “Bin Laden Family Flight”) while a second FBI document claims only to have interviewed 15 of 22 passengers on the same flight.

“Eight days after the worst terrorist attack in U.S. history, Osama bin Laden possibly charters a flight to whisk his family out of the country, and it’s not worth more than a luggage search and a few brief interviews?” asked Judicial Watch President Tom Fitton. “Clearly these documents prove the FBI conducted a slapdash investigation of these Saudi flights. We’ll never know how many investigative leads were lost due to the FBI’s lack of diligence.”

U.S. District Court Judge Richard W. Roberts ordered the FBI to resubmit “proper disclosures” to the Court and Judicial Watch, leading to these incredible findings.

It was revealed that the FBI had previously redacted Osama Bin Laden’s name from the records in order “to protect privacy interests.”

Note the previously blacked out “Osama Bin Laden” – privacy interests? get real.

The documents provide clear proof that the FBI was protecting the Bin Laden while the rest of the world was being told that he had masterminded the biggest terror attack in history. The FBI then attempted to cover up this fact.

An FBI spokesman said the information in the documents is inaccurate.

“There is no new information here. Osama bin Laden did not charter a flight out of the US,” FBI special agent Richard Kolko said.

Nothing to see here, move along.

Kolko then cited the 9/11 Commission Report which determined that the FBI did conduct a thorough enough investigation, despite the fact that its own documents contradict each other on basic facts such as how many people were on a plane. Remember also that the same 9/11 Commission report failed to even mention the collapse of building 7, a 47 story skyscraper that wasn’t hit by anything on 9/11 and in which many people lost their lives according to witnesses.

Perhaps the FBI allowed Bin Laden to charter the flight and take all his family members out of the USA because they know he is not a suspect. The FBI’s most wanted page for Osama bin Laden still does not include an apportion of blame for 9/11 and there has still been no formal indictment of Bin Laden almost six years after 9/11.

The protection of Bin Laden by federal authorities has been ongoing since BEFORE 9/11 when agents were told to ‘back off the Bin Laden family’ in order to protect business interests that the Bush family had with the Bin Ladens and other Saudi nationals.

The FBI asserts that no one on the planes that left had any terrorist links. yet documents (specifically FBI document 199I WF213589) found back in November 2001 prove this to be a falsehood.

The FBI was on the trail of bin Laden family members living in the US before September 11. A document showed that special agents from the Washington field office were investigating Abdullah, a close relative of Osama, because of his relationship with the World Assembly of Muslim Youth (WAMY), a suspected terrorist organisation, it said.

The Times of India reported at the time:

The report, which the BBC claimed was based on a secret FBI document, numbered 199I WF213589 and emanating out of the FBI’s Washington field office, alleged that the cynicism of the American establishment and “connections between the CIA and Saudi Arabia and the Bush men and bin Ladens” may have been the real cause of the deaths of thousands in the World Trade Centre attacks.

The Bin Laden family are business people, they are not as many would have it hardcore fundamentalist muslim extremists that live in caves in Afghanistan. Here is young Osama lounging around a pink Cadillac with his siblings looking very fashionable in the 1970s.

In the 1980s George W Bush made millions on the back of a company financed by Osama Bin Laden’s elder brother, Salem. In addition both presidents Bush had lucrative stakes along with the Bin Ladens in The Carlyle Group which has gone on to become one of America’s biggest defence contractors.

On the very morning of 9/11 George W. Bush’s father was meeting with Osama bin Laden’s brother, Shafig Bin Laden, in the Ritz-Carlton Hotel on Carlyle Group business. The Bin Ladens sold their stake in Carlyle soon after 9/11.

FBI Special agent Robert Wright broke down when testifying that he had been gagged and could not reveal the true extent of what he knew about the Bush-Bin Laden connection and 9/11. His lawyer stepped up and said live on C-Span that “The Bush Family vacations with the Bin Ladens”.

The ties run deep and all lead to money, huge amounts of money. This is how the Bushes do business, this is how they have always done business, they own the best enemies money can buy and the latest revelations underscore the fact that an independent and thorough investigation into 9/11 and the Bush Administration’s role in it is absolutely imperative.

The U.S. Private Prison Cartel Forming New Slavery

Vicky Pelaez
Global Research
El Diario-La Prensa, New York
March 10, 2008

prisons
Prison labor has its roots in slavery. After the 1861-1865 Civil War, a system of “hiring out prisoners” was introduced in order to continue the slavery tradition.

Human rights organizations, as well as political and social ones, are condemning what they are calling a new form of inhumane exploitation in the United States, where they say a prison population of up to 2 million – mostly Black and Hispanic – are working for various industries for a pittance. For the tycoons who have invested in the prison industry, it has been like finding a pot of gold. They don’t have to worry about strikes or paying unemployment insurance, vacations or comp time. All of their workers are full-time, and never arrive late or are absent because of family problems; moreover, if they don’t like the pay of 25 cents an hour and refuse to work, they are locked up in isolation cells.

There are approximately 2 million inmates in state, federal and private prisons throughout the country. According to California Prison Focus, “no other society in human history has imprisoned so many of its own citizens.” The figures show that the United States has locked up more people than any other country: a half million more than China, which has a population five times greater than the U.S. Statistics reveal that the United States holds 25% of the world’s prison population, but only 5% of the world’s people. From less than 300,000 inmates in 1972, the jail population grew to 2 million by the year 2000. In 1990 it was one million. Ten years ago there were only five private prisons in the country, with a population of 2,000 inmates; now, there are 100, with 62,000 inmates. It is expected that by the coming decade, the number will hit 360,000, according to reports.

What has happened over the last 10 years? Why are there so many prisoners?

“The private contracting of prisoners for work fosters incentives to lock people up. Prisons depend on this income. Corporate stockholders who make money off prisoners’ work lobby for longer sentences, in order to expand their workforce. The system feeds itself,” says a study by the Progressive Labor Party, which accuses the prison industry of being “an imitation of Nazi Germany with respect to forced slave labor and concentration camps.”

The prison industry complex is one of the fastest-growing industries in the United States and its investors are on Wall Street. “This multimillion-dollar industry has its own trade exhibitions, conventions, websites, and mail-order/Internet catalogs. It also has direct advertising campaigns, architecture companies, construction companies, investment houses on Wall Street, plumbing supply companies, food supply companies, armed security, and padded cells in a large variety of colors.”

According to the Left Business Observer, the federal prison industry produces 100% of all military helmets, ammunition belts, bullet-proof vests, ID tags, shirts, pants, tents, bags, and canteens. Along with war supplies, prison workers supply 98% of the entire market for equipment assembly services; 93% of paints and paintbrushes; 92% of stove assembly; 46% of body armor; 36% of home appliances; 30% of headphones/microphones/speakers; and 21% of office furniture. Airplane parts, medical supplies, and much more: prisoners are even raising seeing-eye dogs for blind people.

CRIME GOES DOWN, JAIL POPULATION GOES UP

According to reports by human rights organizations, these are the factors that increase the profit potential for those who invest in the prison industry complex:

. Jailing persons convicted of non-violent crimes, and long prison sentences for possession of microscopic quantities of illegal drugs. Federal law stipulates five years’ imprisonment without possibility of parole for possession of 5 grams of crack or 3.5 ounces of heroin, and 10 years for possession of less than 2 ounces of rock-cocaine or crack. A sentence of 5 years for cocaine powder requires possession of 500 grams – 100 times more than the quantity of rock cocaine for the same sentence. Most of those who use cocaine powder are white, middle-class or rich people, while mostly Blacks and Latinos use rock cocaine. In Texas, a person may be sentenced for up to two years’ imprisonment for possessing 4 ounces of marijuana. Here in New York, the 1973 Nelson Rockefeller anti-drug law provides for a mandatory prison sentence of 15 years to life for possession of 4 ounces of any illegal drug.

. The passage in 13 states of the “three strikes” laws (life in prison after being convicted of three felonies), made it necessary to build 20 new federal prisons. One of the most disturbing cases resulting from this measure was that of a prisoner who for stealing a car and two bicycles received three 25-year sentences.

. Longer sentences.

. The passage of laws that require minimum sentencing, without regard for circumstances.

. A large expansion of work by prisoners creating profits that motivate the incarceration of more people for longer periods of time.

. More punishment of prisoners, so as to lengthen their sentences.

HISTORY OF PRISON LABOR IN THE UNITED STATES

Prison labor has its roots in slavery. After the 1861-1865 Civil War, a system of “hiring out prisoners” was introduced in order to continue the slavery tradition. Freed slaves were charged with not carrying out their sharecropping commitments (cultivating someone else’s land in exchange for part of the harvest) or petty thievery – which were almost never proven – and were then “hired out” for cotton picking, working in mines and building railroads. From 1870 until 1910 in the state of Georgia, 88% of hired-out convicts were Black. In Alabama, 93% of “hired-out” miners were Black. In Mississippi, a huge prison farm similar to the old slave plantations replaced the system of hiring out convicts. The notorious Parchman plantation existed until 1972.

During the post-Civil War period, Jim Crow racial segregation laws were imposed on every state, with legal segregation in schools, housing, marriages and many other aspects of daily life. “Today, a new set of markedly racist laws is imposing slave labor and sweatshops on the criminal justice system, now known as the prison industry complex,” comments the Left Business Observer.

Who is investing? At least 37 states have legalized the contracting of prison labor by private corporations that mount their operations inside state prisons. The list of such companies contains the cream of U.S. corporate society: IBM, Boeing, Motorola, Microsoft, AT&T, Wireless, Texas Instrument, Dell, Compaq, Honeywell, Hewlett-Packard, Nortel, Lucent Technologies, 3Com, Intel, Northern Telecom, TWA, Nordstrom’s, Revlon, Macy’s, Pierre Cardin, Target Stores, and many more. All of these businesses are excited about the economic boom generation by prison labor. Just between 1980 and 1994, profits went up from $392 million to $1.31 billion. Inmates in state penitentiaries generally receive the minimum wage for their work, but not all; in Colorado, they get about $2 per hour, well under the minimum. And in privately-run prisons, they receive as little as 17 cents per hour for a maximum of six hours a day, the equivalent of $20 per month. The highest-paying private prison is CCA in Tennessee, where prisoners receive 50 cents per hour for what they call “highly skilled positions.” At those rates, it is no surprise that inmates find the pay in federal prisons to be very generous. There, they can earn $1.25 an hour and work eight hours a day, and sometimes overtime. They can send home $200-$300 per month.

Thanks to prison labor, the United States is once again an attractive location for investment in work that was designed for Third World labor markets. A company that operated a maquiladora (assembly plant in Mexico near the border) closed down its operations there and relocated to San Quentin State Prison in California. In Texas, a factory fired its 150 workers and contracted the services of prisoner-workers from the private Lockhart Texas prison, where circuit boards are assembled for companies like IBM and Compaq.

Oregon State Representative Kevin Mannix recently urged Nike to cut its production in Indonesia and bring it to his state, telling the shoe manufacturer that “there won’t be any transportation costs; we’re offering you competitive prison labor (here).”

PRIVATE PRISONS

The prison privatization boom began in the 1980s, under the governments of Ronald Reagan and Bush Sr., but reached its height in 1990 under William Clinton, when Wall Street stocks were selling like hotcakes. Clinton’s program for cutting the federal workforce resulted in the Justice Departments contracting of private prison corporations for the incarceration of undocumented workers and high-security inmates.

Private prisons are the biggest business in the prison industry complex. About 18 corporations guard 10,000 prisoners in 27 states. The two largest are Correctional Corporation of America (CCA) and Wackenhut, which together control 75%. Private prisons receive a guaranteed amount of money for each prisoner, independent of what it costs to maintain each one. According to Russell Boraas, a private prison administrator in Virginia, “the secret to low operating costs is having a minimal number of guards for the maximum number of prisoners.” The CCA has an ultra-modern prison in Lawrenceville, Virginia, where five guards on dayshift and two at night watch over 750 prisoners. In these prisons, inmates may get their sentences reduced for “good behavior,” but for any infraction, they get 30 days added – which means more profits for CCA. According to a study of New Mexico prisons, it was found that CCA inmates lost “good behavior time” at a rate eight times higher than those in state prisons.

IMPORTING AND EXPORTING INMATES

Profits are so good that now there is a new business: importing inmates with long sentences, meaning the worst criminals. When a federal judge ruled that overcrowding in Texas prisons was cruel and unusual punishment, the CCA signed contracts with sheriffs in poor counties to build and run new jails and share the profits. According to a December 1998 Atlantic Monthly magazine article, this program was backed by investors from Merrill-Lynch, Shearson-Lehman, American Express and Allstate, and the operation was scattered all over rural Texas. That state’s governor, Ann Richards, followed the example of Mario Cuomo in New York and built so many state prisons that the market became flooded, cutting into private prison profits.

After a law signed by Clinton in 1996 – ending court supervision and decisions – caused overcrowding and violent, unsafe conditions in federal prisons, private prison corporations in Texas began to contact other states whose prisons were overcrowded, offering “rent-a-cell” services in the CCA prisons located in small towns in Texas. The commission for a rent-a-cell salesman is $2.50 to $5.50 per day per bed. The county gets $1.50 for each prisoner.

STATISTICS

Ninety-seven percent of 125,000 federal inmates have been convicted of non-violent crimes. It is believed that more than half of the 623,000 inmates in municipal or county jails are innocent of the crimes they are accused of. Of these, the majority are awaiting trial. Two-thirds of the one million state prisoners have committed non-violent offenses. Sixteen percent of the country’s 2 million prisoners suffer from mental illness.

Iran-Conta Affair, The C.I.A. Drug Cartel And The Murder Of Gary Webb

Source: narconews.com

The Iran-Contra Scandal:

On October 5, 1986, a US cargo plane was shot down over southern Nicaragua. Two of the crew members died in the crash, but the third, Eugene Hasenfus, parachuted to safety and was captured by the Sandinista army. Led out of the jungle at gunpoint, Hasenfus’s very existence set in motion an incredible chain of coverups and lies that would mushroom into one of the biggest scandals in American political history. (How quickly people forget…) Loosely known as the Iran-Contra affair, a bizarre network of arms sales to Iran designed to win release of US hostages being held in Lebanon and raise money to fund the Nicaraguan Contras, the botched enterprise took years to unravel, threatening both the Reagan and Bush presidencies in the process. The highlight of the Iran-Contra affair came on May 5, 1987, when Congress began televised hearings into the matter that kept Americans riveted to their TV sets for weeks. The hearings made household names of bureaucrats such as Oliver North, Richard Secord, John Poindexter, Robert McFarlane, and Elliott Abrams, and flushed out colorful bit players such as Washington secretary Fawn Hall, Iranian businessman Albert Hakim, and Saudi billionaire Adnan Khashoggi. But if the truth proved hard to ascertain — thanks in large part to the illegal shredding of key documents by North and his staff — the hearings did expose huge tracts of the US government as weak and unprincipled, contributing to the nation’s growing distrust in the political process by the early 1990s. Convictions were rare in the Iran-Contra affair (North’s and Poindexter’s were overturned on appeal), and the few verdicts that were handed down in court amounted to little more than slaps on the wrist. On December 24, 1992, outgoing president George Bush pardoned former secretary of defense Caspar Weinberger and five other defendants, asserting that it was “time for the country to move on.” But independent counsel Lawrence Walsh, who spent more than seven years and $40 million unraveling the scandal and issued his own report on it in January 1994, saw it differently. “The Iran-Contra coverup,” he said, “… has now been completed.” The Iran-Contra affair was the direct result of two major dilemmas facing the Reagan administration in the early 1980s: (1) how to fund, train, and arm an army of Nicaraguan exiles (known as Contras) to overthrow the socialist Sandinista government, especially after the US Congress made it illegal to do so in 1982, and (2) how to win release of American hostages being held by Islamic radicals in Beirut. Although the CIA was originally authorized to oversee the Contras’ efforts in 1981, and CIA director William Casey embraced the mission wholeheartedly, Congress passed legislation two years later ordering the CIA to pull out. The so-called Boland Amendment made it illegal for the CIA either to aid the Contras or to provoke a war between Nicaragua and Honduras, and was toughened to include ALL sectors of the US government with the passage of the Boland Amendment II in 1984. But by that time, responsibility for supporting the Contras’ campaign had been shifted from the CIA to the National Security Council (NSC), where it wound up on the desk of Oliver North, the deputy-director for political-military affairs. A decorated Vietnam veteran with little or no regard for the law, North quickly established a vast and secret military supply system that employed retired CIA and Defense Department personnel, mercenaries, terrorists, and foreign saboteurs. Yet North never acted alone. In addition to revealing the mentorlike guidance of William Casey, declassified documents make it clear that knowledge, and in some cases direct approval, of the Contra-support effort existed in virtually every wing of the Reagan White House, including the Oval Office itself. As the Nicaraguan civil war raged on, the Reagan administration became increasingly preoccupied with the growing number of Americans kidnapped in Lebanon. When Iran — a nation that held 52 Americans hostage from 1979-1981 — offered to use its influence to negotiate the release of the hostages in Beirut in exchange for the opportunity to buy US weapons, Reagan’s men agreed. The fact that Israel, a country reviled by most militant Muslims, agreed to serve as the go-between in the arms sales only adds to the strange nature of the deal. Unfortunately, North, who assumed command of the arms sales in late August or early September 1985, and McFarlane, who helped him, turned out to be naive bumblers who were no match for the wily Iranian negotiators. Every time a US hostage was released, another was taken. Meanwhile, North cross-pollinated the Contra and Iran initiatives. By artificially inflating the prices of the arms, North was able to reap profits that could be diverted to funding the Contras. The arms shipments lasted from August 20, 1985 to October 28, 1988, and a total of more than 2,000 missiles and spare parts were shipped to Iran. But of the $16.1 million in profits raised, only $3.8 million ever went to the Contras. The rest was used to purchase equipment, such as a cargo freighter, that could be used in future unspecified operations. But when the plane carrying Hasenfus was shot down — and Hasenfus told his captors he believed he was working on a CIA-sanctioned operation, identifying two other operatives by their code names in the process — the entire Iran-Contra scheme quickly collapsed. Vice President George Bush’s office was informed that a plane was missing just hours after Hasenfus was taken prisoner, and a CIA station chief in Costa Rica quickly followed with a coded message that warned the “situation requires we do necessary damage control.” In the case of North and other officials at the NSC, that meant shredding incriminating notes and documents and falsifying others to provide cover — but not before President Ronald Reagan and Attorney General Edwin Meese went on national television, at noon on November 25, 1986, to report the “discovery” of these interrelated Iran and Contra operations and attempt to pin as much of the blame on North as possible. One hour later North was fired and his boss, NSC adviser John Poindexter, was allowed to resign. A “blue-ribbon” panel headed by former US senator John Tower was appointed to investigate the Iran-Contra affair; it issued its final report on February 26, 1987. But while generally scolding President Reagan for his “hands-off management style,” the report proved cursory and unwilling to tackle the scandal head-on. The televised congressional hearings that followed the Tower Commission made a temporary national hero (?!?) of North and revealed the entire investigation as flawed. In order to obtain the testimony of key players such as North and Poindexter, Congress granted them immunity, undermining the ability of Lawrence Walsh, the independent counsel, to successfully prosecute them afterward. Key Witnesses and Testimony Although most Americans struggled to comprehend the complex network of arms sales and Contra resupply that North and his associates had created, the joint House and Senate Iran-Contra hearings were nonetheless entertaining. Beginning May 5, 1987, and lasting until August 6, 1987, they featured more than 250 hours of testimony from 32 witnesses. If no bombshells were dropped by either the witnesses or the lawmakers — and no “smoking gun” was ever uncovered linking Ronald Reagan directly to the whole affair — American still found itself with a while new set of villains. There was Fawn Hall, North’s secretary, who testified that she shredded some classified documents and smuggled others out of the NSC building by stuffing them down her boots and in the back of her blouse. There were Reagan staffers and Cabinet secretaries such as Donald Regan, Edwin Meese, Robert McFarlane, Elliott Abrams, and George Schulz, who provided details of a White House overrun with private-sector intermediaries. And there was a seemingly endless parade of low-level bureaucrats and shady arms dealers caught up in the web. Coincidentally, the one witness who had the most to tell, CIA director William Casey, was discovered to have a brain tumor and died the day after the hearings began. Casey reportedly admitted his involvement in a deathbed interview with Washington Post reported Bob Woodward, although Casey’s widow denies Woodward ever got near her husband’s room. North’s testimony proved to be the most colorful. Networks preempted their daytime soap operas to stay on the air for his testimony. Wearing his green US Marines uniform for the first time in years — North normally wore a coat and tie at the NSC — he bullied the congressional panel with equal parts pathos and patriotism, getting teary-eyed at will and wrapping himself in the American flag. Although North brazenly admitted lying before Congress, destroying evidence, operating US initiatives in violation of US law, and participating in a coverup, he said he did so in defense of America and added that President Reagan had called him a national hero. When it was disclosed that North had accepted a $13,800 fence and security system as a gift from businessmen who were profiting on the arms sales, North testified that the fence was necessary to protect his family from terrorists. In order to distract public attention from this obvious and extremely unpatriotic case of bribery, North’s lawyers displayed a huge photograph of noted terrorist Abu Nidal. “I want you to know,” said North, “that I’d be more than willing — and if anybody else is watching overseas, and I’m glad they are — I’ll be glad to meet Abu Nidal on equal terms anywhere in the world. OK?” Congressional investigators simply could not bear the prospect of impeachment hearings, especially with the Reagan administration poised to reopen nuclear disarmament talks with the Soviet Union. Tired of the whole Iran-Contra affair, the joint congressional panel promptly closed up shop following Poindexter’s testimony in August, and issued its final report on November 17, 1987. Not surprisingly, that report conferred “ultimate responsibility” on the Reagan White House but allowed as how a “cabal of zealots” therein had “undermined the powers of Congress as a co-equal branch and subverted the Constitution.” A minority report, however, signed by eight of the Republicans on the 26-member committee, found only errors of judgment, “no constitutional crisis, no systematic disrespect for the ‘rule of law,’ no grand conspiracy and no administration-wide dishonesty or coverup.” Outcome and Aftermath Although Walsh, a staunch Republican, doggedly compiled cases against the Iran-Contra conspirators, even as he turned eight years of age in 1992, it was all for naught. Eleven defendants were convicted of crimes. The original charges ranged from perjury to defrauding the US Treasury, but these were plea-bargained down to minor felony and misdemeanor charges. McFarlane, who pleaded guilty to four counts of “withholding information” received the harshest penalty (two years’ probation, a $20,000 fine, and 200 hours of community service), but he was one of those pardoned by George Bush. The convictions of North (three counts of obstruction of justice, misleading Congress, and accepting an illegal gratuity) and Poindexter (five counts of conspiracy, obstruction of Congress, and false statements) were overturned on appeal because they had been granted immunity. Former CIA operative Thomas Clines was the only defendant to receive a prison sentence — for falsifying tax records. In his final report on the Iran-Contra affair, which was published January 18, 1994, Walsh concluded that both Reagan and Bush knew of the burgeoning scandal and participated “or at least acquiesced” in the coverup, but could find no evidence that either broke the law. Aftershocks from the Iran-Contra affair had dogged Reagan throughout his second term and may have contributed to Bush’s failed reelection bid in 1992. But it’s hard to know for sure. Distracted by events such as the 1991 Gulf War, the nation gradually lost interest in Iran-Contra, and it is doubtful that many Americans ever fully understood the scandal and its implications. In the end, all anybody knew was that a lot of politicians were breaking laws and lying to the country again, and this manifested itself in the deep cynicism many Americans began to harbor toward the political process. While most of the players retired to lives of lucrative consulting or private business, only North stayed in the spotlight. Portraying himself as an antiestablishment politician and drawing support from conservative groups, North actually won the Republican nomination for the US Senate in Virginia in 1994. He spent $17.5 million on his campaign — often battling denunciations from prominent Republicans — but narrowly lost to the incumbent, Charles Robb. From: “The 20th Century” by David Wallechinsky

Iran Contra Alumni in Bush Government

By The Associated Press, March 13, 2002

Former Iran-Contra figures who have been given jobs in the Bush administration:

-COLIN POWELL. In 1968, as a staff army major in Vietnam, Colin Powell played a direct role in suppressing the inquiry into the My Lai massacre, and into related atrocities against civilians. As a White House fellow during the Watergate years he earned a reputation — but only for keeping his mouth shut.

As a military assistant to Caspar Weinberger during the Reagan administration, he helped to deceive Congress about the trading in heavy weapons with Iran, about the exchange of those weapons for hostages, and about the diversion of the illicit proceeds to finance another illicit operation in Nicaragua.

In Panama, in 1989, he helped shape an operation that totally disregarded international law and took many civilian lives.

During the Gulf War, he strongly opposed any military help for the Kurdish and Shia rebellions against Saddam Hussein.

In the Bosnian conflict, he publicly opposed any intervention against Slobodan Milosevic and his forcible creation of a “Greater Serbia.”

As chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff under President Bill Clinton, he repeatedly intervened to influence political decisions, not only about the Balkans but about the right of homosexuals to serve in the military. Click here to read more about this particular member of George W. Bush’s circle.

-JOHN POINDEXTER. Reagan national security adviser during Iran-Contra, the retired admiral is director of the Pentagon’s Information Awareness Office (now no longer exists). Created after the Sept. 11 terror attacks, the office uses computer technology to detect and analyze new kinds of military threats, including those from terrorist organizations. Poindexter was convicted in 1990 on five felony counts of conspiracy, making false statements to Congress and obstructing congressional inquiries. In 1991, an appellate court overturned the convictions and similar ones against former White House aide Oliver North. The court held that the government had improperly used immunized congressional testimony against them.

-ELLIOTT ABRAMS. A former assistant secretary of state for Western Hemisphere affairs, Abrams was hired by Bush in 2001 as special White House assistant for democracy and human rights. Abrams pleaded guilty to withholding Iran-Contra information from Congress and was among six Iran-Contra figures pardoned on Dec. 24, 1992, by the first President Bush.

-OTTO REICH. Serving as assistant secretary of state for Western Hemisphere affairs under George W. Bush. From 1983 to 1986, Reich led a State Department office accused of running an illegal covert domestic propaganda effort against Nicaragua’s leftist Sandinista government.

-RICHARD ARMITAGE. As Deputy Secretary of State from 2001-2004, Armitage is No. 2 at the State Department after Secretary of State Colin Powell. The first President Bush nominated him to be Army secretary, but Armitage withdrew after his knowledge of Iran-Contra dealings as a top Pentagon official became an issue. In congressional hearings, he denied he had met an Israeli official to discuss the Iran arms sales. A classified Israeli intelligence report suggested otherwise.

-JOHN NEGROPONTE. A veteran diplomat serving as U.N. ambassador 2001 – 2004, Negroponte’s nomination was stalled for months by Democrats. They criticized his work as ambassador to Honduras in the 1980s, when the Central American country was used as a base for the U.S.-backed Contra rebels. He was approved quickly, however, after the Sept. 11 terror attacks. On April 19, 2004, Negroponte was nominated by U.S. President George W. Bush to be the United States Ambassador to Iraq.On February 17, 2005, President George W. Bush named Negroponte as the first Director of National Intelligence. He is currently serving as the United States Deputy Secretary of State

-MITCH DANIELS. Currently is the current Governor of the U.S. state of Indiana. He was director of the Office of Management and Budget in 2001, Daniels was Reagan’s political director who participated in a White House political damage-control effort in 1986 and 1987. Daniels privately complained to associates at the time, however, that the White House account of the secret diplomatic initiative to Iran was not believable, according to various reports.

John Walters. George W. Bush’s Choice for Drug Czar or the Director of the White House Office of National Drug Control Policy (ONDCP) on December 7, 2001. Wants prison for drug users and opposes medicinal use of cannabis. Son of General Vernon Walter, Nixon’s deputy chief of the CIA

– Robert Gates. Current Secretary of Defense. During Iran-Contra he was Director of the C.I.A.

– Michael Hayden. Current Director of C.I.A. During Iran-Contra he was Head of the N.S.A.

The Murder Of Gary Webb

Webb, a Pullitzer prize winning journalist, exposed CIA drug trafficking operations in a series of books and reports for the San Jose Mercury News.

Credible sources who were close to Gary Webb have stated that he was receiving death threats, being regularly followed, and that he was concerned about strange individuals who were seen on multiple occasions breaking into and leaving his house before his apparent ‘suicide’ on Friday December 10th 2004.

Source: narconews.com

For the better part of a decade, a San Francisco Bay Area drug ring sold tons of cocaine to the Crips and Bloods street gangs of Los Angeles and funneled millions in drug profits to a Latin American guerrilla army run by the U.S. Central Intelligence Agency, a Mercury News investigation has found.

This drug network opened the first pipeline between Colombia’s cocaine cartels and the black neighborhoods of Los Angeles, a city now known as the crack capital of the world.

– From the introduction to the original Dark Alliance website, August, 1996

The investigative journalism series that started it all – that changed (or at least, at long last, confirmed) the way all of us think about the war on drugs, the CIA, and U.S. policy toward Latin America – has had a troubled life on the Internet.

In August 1996, Gary Webb began publishing the results of a yearlong investigation that traced the money fueling the horrific U.S.-backed “contra” war against Nicaragua to the profits from Los Angeles’ 1980s crack epidemic. The CIA led its contra army to spend the entire decade terrorizing the Nicaraguan people and their Sandinista government, happily allowing the contras to flood Los Angeles and other North American cities with cocaine to fund their efforts. Gary provided extensively documented evidence that while poor communities in L.A. paid the price of the crack explosion – from rampant addiction in their neighborhoods to oppressive law enforcement and jailing with Reagan’s stepped-up “war on drugs” – the United States government protected the men moving a great deal of the drugs coming into the city. Local dealers faced life sentences while the bigtime narcos from Washington to Managua went free.

What came next is well known. Gary’s story, and the website he and the San Jose Mercury News created to showcase and expand upon it, were initially the talk of the global village. Politicians cited the article in both Sacramento and Washington. The CIA launched an internal investigation. Millions of people were visiting the website.

But then the backlash came. The L.A. Times, embarrassed at having missed a major story on its own turf, and the New York Times, happy to follow its colleagues’ lead in squashing a story that didn’t fit with its own narrative, wielded their mercenary pens against him. Rather than follow up on his exhaustive research, the attack dogs on both coasts pulled his work apart and attacked him for things he hadn’t even said. Although the CIA’s internal investigation would later confirm many of Gary’s own claims, the paper retracted the story and marginalized Gary to the point where he was forced to quit.

San Jose Mercury News executive editor Jerry Ceppos’ cowardly retreat from Dark Alliance included deleting the website, and destroying thousands of undistributed CDROM versions of the site. It was the Internet’s first book burning. Among Ceppos’ lame excuses for the latter was that the now-famous Dark Alliance logo (above; how much more straightforward could a logo for a story about the CIA and crack be?) was “too suggestive.” (Inherent in that statement is that Ceppos’ could not find sufficient fault with Webb’s story itself to censor the website.) And so, for a long time, the most talked-about investigative news story of the 1990s was largely inaccessible to world beyond the small daily’s reach.

Even when copies of the text from the published stories were posted on websites and sent out to mailing lists, it was not the same. The Dark Alliance website was truly groundbreaking, one of the first innovations in using the Internet to not just replicate but expand what journalism could be. Rather than remaining static, the articles lived on the website, surrounded by images, sound files, reader discussion forums that Gary participated in, and an entire library of background information supporting Webb’s powerful case against the C.I.A. Millions of readers flocked to these pages, a nearly unheard-of response in those early days of the World Wide Web.

Until the end of his life, Gary was immensely proud of this website and its role in expanding the idea of what Internet journalism could be. In 2002, having gotten his hands on one of the few remaining copies of the CD, he triumphantly resurrected it. At that time, Gary wrote:

“This site, which won a CNET “Best of the Web” award in 1996, was constructed from a CDROM made by the San Jose Mercury News to promote its Internet presence. Thousands of CDs were made, then quietly incinerated. The reason: the website’s logo—a crack smoker superimposed over the CIA seal—had been criticized as “too suggestive.” Fortunately a few CDs were saved from the flames. Despite the passage of time, this webpage remains a brilliant testament to the power of Internet journalism.”

Here are more articles about Gary Webb:

Evidence Begins To Indicate Gary Webb Was Murdered

Only In Arkansas: Webb ‘Double Gunshot Wounds’ Explanation Defies Belief

Was Gary Webb Murdered?

Dateline report on CIA drug trafficking which includes interviews with Gary Webb, Cele Castillo and ‘Freeway’ Ricky Ross. Alex Jones’ analysis follows.

Who Killed Gary Webb?

Was Gary Webb ’Suicided’ To Kill New Book?

Alex Jones’ Rebuttal To Allegations Made By Michael Ruppert Concerning Gary Webb’s Death

Gary Webb: A hero of authentic journalism

A Personal Experience With Gary Webb

Why They Hated Gary Webb

Fascist smears against Gary Webb continue even in death

Assassination of US Investigative Journalist Gary Webb?